SEO is advertising. Like any advertising, the results cannot be measured. Human behavior cannot be predicted enough to know who will click on a particular link. Once clients click on the link and visit the webpage it is ‘out of the SEO’s hand’. They cannot guarantee how you will respond to potential customers or vice versa.
Even when it comes to ranking positions, it is impossible to know how every website is optimized, and which ones Google will rank at the top. In fact, when a website does take postion #1 from one of my clients (and a dozen other SEO firms) we immediately work to retake that spot. And – to push the competition down without breaking any rules or acting irresponsibly.
Unfortunately, clients rarely have realistic expectations. If you look at Google as the largest magazine in the whole world (think National Geographic or Time) would you expect to see the same cover month after month? Search engines constantly work to prevent this. Then there are SEO scams that use ‘guaranteed rankings and traffic’ as a catchphrase to lure in gullible clients. They either have no integrity, or no understanding of how the search engines really work.
Would you expect to get the front cover of Time’s magazine for $399? Yet small businesses the world over expect. They want to get the top keywords of Google for this amount or less – and are upset if they don’t remain there permanently.
The search engine technology, hardware, and strategies are constantly changing. The Search engines work hard to give consumers the best results, while still ranking in billions. Google continually makes hundreds of changes a year.
These changes are designed to stop practices that put one website at the top of the search engines and leave them there. When people are surfing the net, they don’t want to see the same results every time they look.
Rankings do not always equal traffic.
Traffic doesn’t always equal visits.
Visits do not always equal sales.
A great SEO campaign should be a symbiotic relationship between the business owner and the internet marketing company. The SEO firm should work to bring the ‘right’ consumers to the website. The company then has the task of converting those visitors to customers.
Just because there are no guarantees with SEO, it doesn’t mean you cannot set goals and expectations. Here are a few tips for helping you weed out the scams from the good SEO firms.
If you’re in the market for a really good SEO firm catering to the needs of small and medium-sized businesses, please check out what we have to offer and give us a call at (561) 822-9931 or fill out our easy quote request form.